The roller coaster of Bitcoin is bringing with it an excessive interest in cryptocurrencies. Although it is not known exactly what they are for or what the real risks of investing in them are, platforms such as Coinbase make it easy for anyone to invest their money in just a few minutes in a very specific range of currencies (Bitcoin, Ethereum, Litecoin and Bitcoin Cash, in this case). However, more specialized buying and selling markets are filled with such unique names as PutinCoin, WeAreSatoshi, Rasputin Online Con, Stress, Piggycoin, CHIPS, TRON or Pluton , for example. All these are known as altcoins.

Altcoin responds to the union of alternative and coin and its meaning does not intend to define anything more than that: alternative currencies. It is defined with this name to all those cryptocurrency that are not Bitcoin , since a large part derives from this original both in its processes and in the processes behind it. The above examples are just a small sample of the more than a thousand virtual currencies that can be found in places like CoinMarketCap , where also some figures whose future is more promising, in the beginning, such as IOTA, Ripple or the aforementioned Litecoin and Ethereum .

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The relevance of altcoins

While Bitcoin continues to be the benchmark in terms of valuation – and much has to change things so that it does not remain so for a while – its success has not only led to the emergence of more cryptocurrencies, but also the interest of society in general for these new options. With the sudden peak of the last few months, the number of people looking for a future investment in virtual coins has multiplied exponentially, giving them a prominence that until now they did not know.

Although in the beginning many Bitcoin investors alleged the null necessity of these currencies and predicted a short existence, the truth is that they have become a fundamental part of the cryptocurrency market. These not only help to extend the use of the same , but also involve a greater number of development paths to implement new functions, refine processes and, ultimately, give way to a greater number of options that could be very useful in a future not so distant.

Beyond this, in terms of investment or not in altcoins, we must always keep in mind the high volatility of the securities with which we operate. If it is already complicated to try to configure what the future of Bitcoin can be in the short, medium or long term , much more with currencies that have less support at the general level and of which less data are known. In spite of how attractive it may seem at first the promise repeated so many times these days consisting of investing now and earning thousands of euros in a short time, we must not lose sight of the enormously changing character that it implies.

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